Sunday Vigil

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Reading of the Word of God

Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia

Whoever lives and believes in me
will never die.

Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia

1 Timothy 1, 15-17

Here is a saying that you can rely on and nobody should doubt: that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners. I myself am the greatest of them;

and if mercy has been shown to me, it is because Jesus Christ meant to make me the leading example of his inexhaustible patience for all the other people who were later to trust in him for eternal life.

To the eternal King, the undying, invisible and only God, be honour and glory for ever and ever. Amen.


Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia

If you believe, you will see the glory of God,
thus says the Lord.

Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia

Paul recalls the mission of preaching the Gospel entrusted to him and remembers when the Lord met him on his way to Damascus. He thanks the Lord for his great goodness and mercy, as the Lord called Paul while he was “a blasphemer and a persecutor and a man of violence.” Paul presents himself to Agrippa with these words: “I not only locked up many of the saints in prison, but I also cast my vote against them when they were being condemned to death. By punishing them often in all the synagogues I tried to force them to blaspheme; and since I was so furiously enraged at them, I pursued them even to foreign cities” (Acts 26:10-11). Paul wonders how God could choose him notwithstanding that. He thinks being considered trustworthy to serve the Gospel is a miracle. Paul knows that the only reason for his mission comes from above: “I received mercy.” This is true, indeed, for every disciple. Anyway, Paul does not justify his past life with his ignorance of the Gospel. He acknowledges that he was driven by the blind power of evil that always leads to unjustified and unjustifiable violence. Therefore his gratitude to God for the superabundant gift he received is even greater. From then on the apostle has a new life in communion with Christ, from whom he takes strength of faith and urgency of charity. He never forgets his past, repudiated life, but its memory is the cause of his humility and gratefulness. He considers himself “the least of the apostles, unfit to be called an apostle, because I persecuted the church of God the least of the apostles, not fit to be called an apostle, because I persecuted the church of God” (1 Cor 15:9), “the very least of all the saints” (Eph 3:8). He is, indeed, the example for disciples of all ages. He is the clear testimony that no one is too distant from God to be reached by His mercy. His praise ends with a thanksgiving prayer. Besides, how could we not pay the greatest honour to the Lord who shows such a large love for sinners